On Christmas day, Peter Capaldi handed his TARDIS key to Jodie Whittaker in a touching farewell scene. Of course, as is always the case with regenerations episodes, ‘Twice Upon A Time’ didn’t exactly give us much of a sense of what to expect when Jodie Whittaker’s Thirteenth Doctor properly takes the helm of the TARDIS later this year.
After all, that’s the key to regeneration. Even as the core of the character remains the same, each new actor brings something of him- or herself to the role of the Doctor. And (short of the Doctor herself) who better to offer some hint of what Jodie Whittaker may bring to the part than her former ‘Broadchurch’ co-star and (perhaps more importantly) former Doctor, David Tennant?
Tennant, as I’m sure everyone reading this already knows, played the Tenth Doctor from 2005 to 2009, during which time his portrayal of the Time Lord became an instant and enduring fan favorite. So as someone who has both played the Doctor and worked with Whittaker, what does Tennant think the newcomer will bring to the role?
At the recent Wizard World New Orleans convention, Tennant offered his thoughts on the matter:
“I think she’ll bring herself. I don’t mean that to sound as flippant as it did. What Jodie has sort of become known for as an actress, she’s so brilliantly and heartstoppingly emotional, in something like ‘Broadchurch’, where she just broke a nation’s heart with this wonderful portrait of this mother and these awful desperate straits. And I think people have often gone to Jodie to break our hearts, because she does it so wonderfully. But if you know Jodie, she’s so funny and rude and she’s got this broad accent, and she just sort of fizzes with energy and madness. She’s quite unpredictable and glorious and funny. And I imagine – I don’t know – but I imagine she’ll bring a bit of that too, and her natural anarchy will be something that the Doctor will enjoy.”
Tennant’s mention of ‘Broadchurch’ may well prove telling. Not only were he and Whittaker co-stars on the acclaimed series, but the show is also the brainchild of writer/producer Chris Chibnall. Chibnall, of course, is taking the reins of ‘Doctor Who’ following veteran showrunner Steven Moffat‘s recent departure. Clearly Whittaker’s performance there made an impression on Chibnall (And rightly so. If you’ve not watched ‘Broadchurch’, I’d encourage you to do exactly that.), and that knowledge will likely set at least some ‘Who’ fans to picking apart her ‘Broadchurch’ performance in the hope of seeing whatever Chibnall did.
Be sure to check back with ScienceFiction.com for more ‘Doctor Who’ news as the season’s premiere approaches.
Jodie Whittaker’s first season of ‘Doctor Who’ will begin later this year, during which she will be joined by an array of companions that includes Mandip Gill, Tosin Cole, and Bradley Walsh.